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3rd April 2017 | Editorial Simplified

Editorial Simplified : 3rd Day of April 2017

This Series of posts covers the essential Editorial from prominent newspapers. The Editorial from the newspapers are compiled by the Subject Teachers form the Academy and provided in notes format so that the aspirants does not waste their precious time in sifting through the newspapers. 

The Hindu

Editorial : Wine and Whimper

Context:

Banning of sale of liquor by outlets that fall within 500m of the highways

Important Points:

  • The SC had passed an order banning sale of alcohol within 500m from state highways.
  • It has now further clarified the order by stating that this ban will be imposed not just on retail outlets but also on bars, hotels and clubs.
  • Such a move is draconian in its sweep and one feels that the court hasn’t thought it out well.
  • It is relatively easier for retail outlets to move out of the 500m radius without significant loss of clientele but the same cannot be said for bars and hotels.
  • Also, these outlets serve alcohol to residents of cities and that is different from drunk drivers on highways and the court has overlooked this distinction.
  • This move also adversely affects the stay-in hotel guests who would no longer be able to have alcohol as such hotels wouldn’t be allowed to serve.
  • There would be a significant loss to the government as well due to lower revenue collection from liquor which forms a major part of the kitty.
  • This could also push the legal drinking activity underground.
  • Many UTs will be severely hit. Some have already started thinking of way outs. Chandigarh has declared all state roads as urban roads to sidestep this order. Puducherry is caught between the sea and the highway. Goa will find some relief because of the limit of 200m in case of population below 20,000 but it stands to lose about a third of its business.
  • What we need is enforcement of existing laws and not sweeping diktats from the court.

If weak enforcement of laws could be overcome by stricter laws, then judicial officers might as well replace law-enforcers.

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